Theologians praise pope's historic appointment of women as members of Vatican congregation

The lack of women members of the religious congregation had drawn special scrutiny in recent years, as Vatican statistics estimate that there are about four times as many women in Catholic religious orders compared to men. Francis' appointments for the religious congregation, which is formally named the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, were announced July 8.

Latin American Sisters Exchange graduates head home with enriched experience

After five years serving 10 U.S. dioceses with burgeoning Latino populations, 36 sisters have graduated from the U.S.-Latin American Sisters Exchange Program. They're returning home with Boston College degrees, English skills, and pastoral experience. And for those U.S. dioceses, the sisters leave behind ministries they have built and local leaders they have trained to keep those ministries sustainable.

Ursuline sisters gift motherhouse to Louisville Sacred Heart Schools

In a property transfer they're calling "A Gift of the Heart to the Heart," the sisters hope their property, which they have owned for 142 years, will help their schools continue to thrive and expand. The move, however, is not without its sadness, "This is where we were all formed; this is where we started. We all thought we'd eventually come back full circle," said Sr. Janet Peterworth, president of the Ursuline Sisters of Louisville. 

Being church: We can do this

Lay-led organizations offer working models at every level from international to parish. The most illuminating model I've seen is the Leadership Conference of Women Religious and its congregations – all lay women like me. Very quietly, with no spotlights, they've been evolving innovative ways to be a community of communities since the 1960s.  

UISG president says group is considering publishing women deacons report

Beyond originally requesting the creation of the women deacons commission, the International Union of Superiors General has pressed for greater involvement of women religious in synods of bishops and in the workings of the Vatican office that oversees the world's religious orders. Claretian Missionary Sr. Jolanda Kafka, UISG's new president, said she believed that such advocacy for women's leadership had now become obligatory for her organization, which represents some 450,000 sisters and nuns worldwide.